When my wife Amanda is away from our home (even if it’s for 5 minutes) – everyone goes completely wild. It’s almost like she takes the well-mannered and calm parts of our brains and most of our sensibilities with her because while she is away the house gets turned upside down, and all the children (I include myself with the children) start acting like cavemen and/or wild animals. I am convinced that there is some type of chemical reaction that occurs in each of us when the mother of our home is absent. In fact, I know this is true, because the minute she walks in the door, everything is back to normal. The house might still be a mess (it’s hard for that to rectify itself), but all of us feel the difference when Amanda is home.
There is a comforting power (yes, it is a power) that my wife has, that we cannot live without – at least not very long. If we were left to our own devices (without her loving influence), we would quickly slip into ‘a state of nature…. in the gall of bitterness…being without [mom] in our world, and therefore we would be in a state contrary to the nature of happiness’. 1 This is not an over-dramatization – we would literally destroy ourselves due to lack of Amanda because we would be in a ‘state contrary to the nature of happiness’.
For us to be ‘in a state consistent to the nature of happiness’ my children need a mother and I need a wife. By myself, I just can’t do it. I need a best friend who is also my helpmeet. I need someone who is every sense of the word superior to me, greater than me, better than me, smarter than me, more loving than me, more patient than me, more caring than me, more thoughtful than me, more giving than me, more understanding than me, more patient than me, and much more naturally spiritual than me who can lift me up to be more than I currently am. I need someone who can comfort me even when she wants to kick me. I need someone who can give me soft advice and hard advice (and someone who knows the difference). I need someone who can pick me up when I am down, and I need someone who is strong enough to carry the weight of being a righteous mother. I need someone who knows and understands that a righteous mother with a strong influence over her family makes Satan tremble. I need her to make me whole. I need someone who has my back even when, or rather especially when, I deserve it the least. I need someone who will always be there. I need Amanda.
My wife is my favorite person in the whole world. She makes me happy. She makes me laugh. I just like to be around her. Even if we aren’t actively communicating – I just like to be close to her. When we read, I like to be in the same room as her – just because. When she cooks dinner – I like to just stand in the kitchen and watch (sometimes I help) because I just like to be near her. I like the way she makes me feel. She makes me feel wanted and important and special and she makes me feel worth. In short – she makes me feel love. She has a powerful effect on me that no other human has because of how I feel around her and because of how I feel for her.
Even when we aren’t in the same room – we are still together. We are united. We are a true companionship. My thoughts can be her thoughts and our goals are the same. Our hopes, dreams, intents, and happiness can all be shared – completely. She is a true companion, and she is constant (unrelenting awesomeness and never-ending source of power and love) and she brings me comfort. Her presence and power is the opposite of the chaos that we feel when she is away. The peace and calm knowledge that we have when ‘mom is home’ cannot be replaced.
There is another power that brings the same comforting and calming affect and we have been told that we have access to it. This is good news for you women because us men just cannot compare with your awesomeness – and this power is so good at it, they actually just named him ‘The Comforter’. This comforting power has a similar affect on us – bringing peace, assurance, patience, and love while it is with us and as expected when this comforter leaves, we immediately turn into wild dogs and crazy people with no sensibility and/or reason. We might be able to fend for ourselves for a few minutes – but eventually we will slip (not so gracefully) into ‘a state of nature…. in the gall of bitterness…being without God in the world, and therefore we would be in a state contrary to the nature of happiness’. 1
For us to be ‘in this state consistent to the nature of happiness’ we need help. We need someone who is bigger, better, stronger, wiser, kinder, more patient, more loving, more understanding, more eager, and more awesome as our companion. We need a best friend who is also our jumpstart. We need someone who is every sense of the word superior to us, (in this case – perfect) who can lift us up to be more than we currently are. We need someone who can comfort us even when he wants to kick us. We need someone who can give us soft advice and hard advice depending on the situation we’re in. We need someone who can pick us up when we are down, encourage us to continue onward and upward2 and we need someone who is strong enough to carry the weight of being a comforter to the whole entire world. We need someone who knows and understands that we have power within us that we haven’t even tapped into yet. We need his half (let’s be honest – his half is essentially a whole) to make us as whole as we can be. We need someone who has our back even when, or rather especially when, we deserve it the least. We need someone who will always be there. We need the comfort of the Holy Ghost.
The spirit (and its comforting power) is my favorite thing in the whole world. It makes me happy. It makes me cry like a baby and I love it. I just like to feel it. Even if we aren’t actively communicating – I just like to be close to it. When I read, I like it to be with me – just because. When I ride my bike (or insert any daily activity here) – I like to pay attention because he will help me and lead me and guide me. I like the way it makes me feel. He makes me feel wanted and important and special and he makes me feel worth. In short – he makes me feel love. The spirit has a powerful effect on me that no other force can has because of how I feel because of it.
Even when we aren’t in the same room – we can still be together. We are united. We have the promise of a true companionship. My thoughts can be his thoughts and our goals should be the same. Our hopes, dreams, intents, and happiness can all be shared – completely. He is a true companion, and He is constant (unrelenting awesomeness and never-ending source of power and love) and he brings us comfort. His presence and power is the opposite of the chaos that we feel when he is away. The peace and calm knowledge that we have when ‘the spirit is felt’ cannot be replaced.
Let us seek this companion, who has promised to be our ‘constant companion’3 if we meet follow his rules for companionship. Let us realize that the peace that he promises is far beyond ‘peace’ as we can define it or as it can be imagined by earthly minds. It is ‘His peace that he gives us, not as the world gives’.4 That is real comfort and that is real joy. Let us live ‘in a state consistent with the manner of happiness’
1 See Alma 41:11
2 There have been many people and sources for this phrase, but I choose to cite C. S. Lewis from the Chronicles of Narnia (The Horse and His Boy) – since he is my favorite.
3 See D&C 121 (the whole section)
4 See John 14:27